McCain’s campaign is falling away and there’s nothing he can do about it. Quite the opposite:
John McCain is pulling out of Michigan, according to two Republicans, a stunning move a month away from Election Day that indicates the difficulty Republicans are having in finding blue states to put in play.
McCain will go off TV in Michigan, stop dropping mail there and send most of his staff to more competitive states, including Wisconsin, Ohio and Florida. Wisconsin went for Kerry in 2004, Ohio and Florida for Bush.
A McCain aide confirmed the move and chalked it up to the state’s Democratic tilt and the resources Obama had put in place there.
The McCain campaign official said staff and resources stationed in Michigan will be moved to other battleground states like Ohio and Pennsylvania.
Michigan is a “blue” state, having voted for Al Gore and John Kerry. But it didn’t do so by wide margins, and it’s one that McCain’s people had very much been hoping to pick off and turn red. It has 17 electoral votes. Only seven states have more. McCain winning Michigan would have been a very big deal. But that’s seemingly off the table now, barring some shocking development.
Meanwhile, let’s look at the other battleground states. The list is roughly as follows: Florida (27 electoral votes), Ohio (20), North Carolina (15), Virginia (13), Indiana (11), Colorado (nine), Iowa (seven), New Mexico (five) and New Hampshire (four). That’s nine states worth a total of 111 electoral votes.
Here’s the interesting thing about those nine states: eight of them voted for George Bush in 2004. Only the smallest one – New Hampshire – went for Kerry. This means that the battle is taking place on what used to be almost entirely red territory but is now up for grabs.
By contrast, aside from New Hampshire, there isn’t a single Kerry state where McCain currently has more-or-less even footing in the polls. A few are close-ish – a margin for Barack Obama of five points or fewer – notably Pennsylvania (21) and Minnesota (10). But in none would you say today that McCain is poised to capture it.
Not good news for McCain really. Jon Snow is already calling November 4th for Obama.